Creative Incubator Artist of the Day: Ryan Wilkes

Creative Incubator Artist of the Day: Ryan Wilkes

Get to know an artist! Today’s spotlight is on Ryan Wilkes

Ryan Wilkes (he/him) came to freelance filmmaking via the decidedly unconventional route of engineering. Now that he’s here, though, there’s no stopping him. One look at his website and you’ll see he’s well on his way to becoming a world class storyteller and documentary filmmaker. As one of our 3 filmmakers documenting the Incubator process, Ryan is excited to be working with 4 other incredible artists and also honoured that they trust him to share their journeys. The engineer in Ryan is already anticipating all of the angles, “I’ll have to be very organized and tactical while working on all 4 stories at once.”

Ryan was intrigued by the Incubator program as an opportunity to work on his already well honed storytelling skills, and as a way to get more involved in the Calgary arts scene. As someone who came to their creative passion a few years ago, he is excited about the opportunity to do something meaningful within Calgary’s creative scene. Having fun and leaving a positive impact on the world are two of Ryan’s core values. The Creative Incubator is providing Ryan an opportunity to do both.

cSPACE: What’s your imaginary autobiography called?

RW: “Why Not!?” because I ask myself that question a lot when debating making a decision. It’s kind of like, “what’s the worst that could happen if this went terribly wrong” and removes a lot of the fear of failure, which allows me to take bigger risks in some ways.

cSPACE: “What’s the worst that could happen, ”probably comes from your engineering side as well. It pays to consider all the possible outcomes in advance 🙂  We’re so glad your adventurous spirit sent you our way! We can’t wait to see what risks you take here. What inspires you about cSPACE?

RW: The first thing that comes to mind is the amazing team of staff at cSPACE and how supportive and awesome they are. The space that the artists get to work in is fabulous and I can’t wait to see how they decide to put it to use.

cSPACE: At cSPACE we live by the 4C’s: Creativity, Community, Collaboration, and Change. Which of these resonates the most with you right now?

RW: For me, Collaboration really sticks out for me right now. When I am making a film I am always conscious that it is a collaborative effort between those behind the lens and those in front of it. I always have to remind myself that I am telling someone else’s story, and that I want it to be told in a way that feels true to the artist. This requires a lot of transparency and communication between both sides.

cSPACE: Where do you see yourself in five years?

RW: In a perfect world I would be travelling to the most remote corners of the earth, making documentaries about our incredible world, its people, ecosystems, and history.

How can people connect with you, support you, and find out more?

RW: My website ( is the best way to see what I have done in the past, and my Instagram (@explorastoryfilms) is the best way to see what I am up to currently!

cSPACE: We’re lucky to have Ryan here in the Creative Incubator and are so excited to see where his “Why Not?” attitude leads him in this journey.

cSPACE gratefully acknowledges the support of the Calgary Foundation for the Creative Incubator Initiative